It never rains under my board. It never rains under Sanjski Par either.
After more than four years, I went back to Misja Pec to try my chances on Sanjski Par, the route I fell in love with when I went there to interview Tadej Slabe, old school hero and serious wad.
The route had gone to gather dust in the recesses of my mind for a few years, then after a troubled relationship with climbing in the last years, it came out again to push me to train and to get stronger.
So, from September, I put in four to six weekly sessions, with fingerboarding, system climbing, bouldering, and power endurance.
A few weeks ago I hit a monster peak, which put me on top of a couple of projects on my board and made my ego and psyche boost.
Then, while I was tapering the training to get to the route strong but rested, one day I made a mistake. I took part to a local comp.
It was a rainy Sunday, and I had trained at home doing feet on campusing with 6 kg on; I wanted to do one footed bouldering with 6 kg on, after, but was too tired, so I decided to go and make my friends happy by checking out the comp they had set. Bad idea.
The wall we have is just slightly overhanging, so it's hard to set hard problems, which have to be contrieved and generally ugly. On one of the easier ones, though, I heel hooked to gain the top. No problem.
The following day, around noon, while at work, I realized I could neither stand up nor walk. My left leg was stiff and swollen like a ballon.
Four days before going to trfy the route.
I decided to cut my losses, gulp antiinflammatories, massage arnica and go nonetheless.
As it was immediately clear, climbing hard requires both legs to work properly: there lies the difference with campusing.
Tadej was there, under the pouring rain, in 20 degrees temp and 100% humidity, quite tipycally barechested and in shorts. The man is a legend: his current project is to campus the ten central moves of Sanjski.
When you climb with Tadej, you follow his rules: total time at the crag, one hour (walk-in included: he walks fast); warm up: no; warm down: no; total tries: two. This is how a busy man climbs.
So, there I was.
On my first go I barely managed to see the holds. Then I touched a few of them and my forearms exploded. On my second go I linked a few moves of the start, but my left knee was quite useless, especially on hard pull-ins and drop-knees that I had to avoid like the plague. So I tried to climb face on. Ahah!
That was the first day.
On my second day, the first go was dedicated not to rip a tendon, and the second to actually perform a few moves.
Then for another two days I just gorged on Spritz and baccalà. I made a whole lotta love with my girlfriend.
So, Sanjski Par.
I had seen a few videos, but they were of the route prior to a major breakage of a big mushroom that hosted a strong double heel-hook and some toe-hooks for many moves of the central part.
The already hard 8c is now hard 8c+. I tried a hard 8c+. Jesus fucking Christ. I must be mad.
If there's a hard route in the World that I can climb, it's this one: it's short, it's crimpy, it's a roof and it's so low to the ground that if you skip the last clip you need a crashpad to protect the fall. Seriously.
I had so much fun.
I did all the moves, with many doubts about the sequence, but my dodgy knee didn't allow to try tricks, so everything needs further inspection. I will go back as soon as my knee heals, somehow: the sports doctor checked it out and told me I have a broken meniscus, but I probably didn't break it now. It's old stuff. I gave it a serious beating this time though.
How did I feel on the route? Bad.
How did I feel on the route bearing in mind that it's hard 8c+? Fucking good.
Before going, I was physically very very exhausted. I felt strong but exhausted: the training had been brutal. Months and months on end of weighted beastmaking, weighted bouldering, power endurance, circuits.
I needed a rest. And I planned to rest at least two weeks after this mini trip, because I really really needed it. I wanted to have fun, to relax, to go to my board without thinking "What are the homeworks for today? How will I do on the BM? Which hold of the circuit will I get to?"
I got home Tuesday night.
I trained on Wednesday evening. And a great session, also. And I am going to train today. And tomorrow.
I came back from Sanjiski Par with a renewed motivation. And all just for 20 moves in a crimpy roof. So fucking cool.
It never rains under my board.